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NHS North Lancashire affiliate scheme

From EPSA - European Public Sector Award

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Diploma winner

NHS North Lancashire recognises the need to create new ways of actively involving and consulting with the local population, enabling the NHS North Lancashire to become more responsive to their needs and wishes, as well as being more accountable to the local community. They wanted to target members of the local population who would not ordinarily seek to get involved with the organisation in this way. The Affiliate Scheme is a mechanism for engaging and involving local communities in order to share views, gauge opinion and embed the work of NHS North Lancashire within our population.

The Affiliate Scheme has grown considerably and now has over 7000 members who contribute towards decision making on vital topics, ranging from bowel cancer screening through to unscheduled care services. The results of the involvement e.g. the focus group, online poll etc. is then fed back to Affiliate members so that they can see the outcomes and learn of the next steps. The Affiliate Scheme is led by NHS North Lancashire Corporate Services together with an Affiliate Chair - who acts as a ‘critical friend’ - and Affiliate Co-coordinator. In order to expand the scheme further, NHS North Lancashire is currently recruiting three locality leads to provide support with the development of a work plan and activity programme for existing affiliates, in addition to attracting new members. Heads of Services who wish to involve Affiliates in a specific area of healthcare complete a Staff Involvement Toolkit to help determine the specific objectives, key issues, purpose of the involvement activity, target groups to be consulted, proposed engagement tools and reporting requirements. The end result is a scheme that offers local residents the opportunity to be genuinely involved in their local healthcare at a level to suit their needs and personal requirements. It allows members of our local community to play an important role in strategic issues and is not limited to sectional groups of the population.

Targeted recruitment has helped NHS North Lancashire to engage with a diverse range of people from the local community so that the scheme is representative of the local population. The hope is that the scheme will continue to grow from strength to strength and ensure continued sustainable communication between NHS North Lancashire and the local population regarding their perceived needs, actual needs and the health services provided locally, now and in the future.

Award info
Award category: citizen involvement
Award type: diploma
Award year: 2009
Project type
Sector: Public health and social welfare/affairs
Type of activity: strategic management and planning tools
Keywords: Healthcare services, needs assessment
Short English description: The end result is a scheme that offers local residents the opportunity to be genuinely involved in their local healthcare at a level to suit their needs and personal requirements
Further information
Organisation: NHS North Lancashire
Other applicants:
Homepage: http://www.northlancs.nhs.uk
Level of government: local level
Size of organisation: >100
Number of people involved:
Country: United Kingdom
EU membership: EU member
Language code: en
Start date:
End date:


NHS North Lancashire affiliate scheme (54.290175° N, 0.445171° W)
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